Customer storyjenzabar-logo

Jenzabar saves time on content formatting and collaboration

With Scottie Gearing, Senior Technical Writer and Team Lead

Jenzabar delivers market-leading enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions and student information systems (SIS) to higher education institutions around the world. Jenzabar’s solutions bring together data analytics, student engagement, online learning, enrolment and retention, fundraising, financial aid, Human Capital Management (HCM), and financial management capabilities to power an entire campus on a single platform.

Help Authoring Tool no longer met the needs

Jenzabar’s teams and products have grown exponentially over the past five years, and while their previous Help Authoring Tool served them well, they soon outpaced and outgrew its capabilities. It started to take longer to generate their online help outputs, eventually requiring customized scripts to work correctly in their environment. The content reuse features the tool offered weren’t syncing across projects correctly, costing time and effort to validate, change, and correct issues. Collaboration was challenging because only one author could work with a project at a time and stakeholders outside the documentation team couldn’t review the content. The team had to transfer content to a Word document and then copy and paste changes back into the tool, which created new formatting headaches.

 

New requirements to support Jenzabar’s growth:

  • Reusable content. The team wanted to utilize reusable content to generate different outputs, minimize or eliminate duplicate efforts, build more consistent content, and provide additional opportunities for collaboration between authors and content stakeholders.   
  • Web-based solution. With the previous authoring tool, they checked out individual projects and moved them back and forth on a server. This time-intensive process prohibited multiple users from working on a project at the same time. Their HTML5 outputs for each release include more than 24k files, which was becoming a storage challenge for their internal server. They wanted a single repository in an easily accessible location. 
  • Easier builds. The team’s previous tool let them set up different HTML5 and PDF outputs, but the restructuring process was clunky and unreliable, especially with the Release News output that requires multiple updates during hectic release timeframes.

Successful migration of over 6,000 files to Paligo

Paligo was recommended by a Senior Manager, and after evaluating several other authoring tools, they determined Paligo was the best solution. The Paligo team worked closely with the Jenzabar team to evaluate the content and ensure the solution was right. Although they weren’t able to use a mass file import because of the complexity of the projects and files, Paligo responded quickly to their questions, providing tips and guidance about content reuse, structured authoring, and output requirements/styling to make the transition as painless as possible. Over the course of three months, 6,100 html files were migrated from Jenzabar’s previous authoring tool over to Paligo with no interruption or delay to their release schedule. 

16x productivity increase

Jenzabar’s transition to Paligo has allowed their team to evaluate and improve their processes to deliver help content. The support they received from Paligo, from instructive/useful help to responsiveness to issues raised, has enabled collaboration within their team and other teams, improved their efficiency, and encouraged creative approaches to developing and delivering help to their clients. 

The Jenzabar documentation team
Jenzabar's documentation team

Easy collaboration and automated formatting

When asked about his favourite Paligo features, Scottie said:

“There are many features to love, but if we have to choose, the first would be the ease of collaboration. We have eight awesome people on our documentation team, and we can quickly access and review another team member’s work without the hassle of downloading a massive file from our server and then uploading it again. The review features also let our PMs and SMEs evaluate and comment on our work directly from Paligo, another time-saving collaboration feature. 

The second feature we love is the customization capabilities for the different outputs. We have been able to incorporate our style and branding by customizing the CSS and can produce our PDF guides and HTML5 directly from Paligo. We went from downloading a Word document, formatting it, and saving it as a PDF to downloading a perfectly formatted PDF directly from Paligo. #Winning”